The Rubberneckers have never needed an invite, official or otherwise, to bring a night home. So it's completely logical that not only would the raucous formerly-of-Blue-Lake cowpunks time a visit to coincide with the annual Humboldt Folklife Festival, but that they'd play shows around the fest's finale — at the Logger Bar, of course.
For those unfamiliar with this legendary blast-from-the-past, please take note of some of their song titles: "Drunk by Four," "I'll Buy" and "Wasted Tonight." These songs were not written based on some conceptual idea of what excessive alcohol intake might be like. The bandmembers' lives and live performances were often equally chaotic.
On Friday night, original 'Neckers Clay Smith (now in Florida) and Greg Lojko (residing in New York) will play as a duo, reprising Rubberneckers' tunes with a classic, stripped-down, acoustic set. They will also perform as the Jade Stems, with Jay Forbes on drums and Ben Clifton on vocals, in a tribute to their former bandmate Kyle Scott who was killed in a car accident this year. The Tainted Zucchini, also of the era, opens.
After the all-day free folk fest on Saturday, Clay and Greg return to the Logger, where Strix Vega's Andy Powell will join them on bass guitar and man-of-a-thousand-bands Pete Ciotti sits in on drums to fill out the band, promising "the kind of full-on, inebriating and raucous performances that the Rubberneckers are known for." People will be singing and shouting along, shots will be tossed back, hearts will likely be broken, drunken makeout sessions will definitely occur. Afterward, we'll say there's two kinds of people in this world: Those who made it and those who missed it.
Both shows at 9 p.m., no cover, 21-and-over.
Elegant atmosphere, popping sound
Oakland's the Phenomenauts — think rockabilly meets Devo at a Ramones' concert – and the Small Axe Ensemble play the Morris Graves Museum of Art. Doors at 7:30 p.m., show at 8 p.m., cover is $7, all ages.
Fast and simple
Portland power trio the Quick and Easy Boys lend some rock 'n' roll to Humboldt Brews, starting at 9:30 p.m. Cover is $10, show is 21-and-over.
From South Austin, Uncle Lucius describes itself thus: "A dream, conjured in the minds of five sonic mercenaries, a clarion call to arms for true believers. It is the voice that shakes you from complacency, grabs you with both hands and implores: 'Get in the van!'" Which sounds like something you should run from, but based on the single track I listened to ("Flood Then Fade Away"), the band's harmless and fairly enjoyable. It seems like the kind of show you'd leave feeling happy. Cover's $10, 9:30 p.m., 21-and-over.
Former funk goddess and gospel soloist Paula Jones jazzes up the Westhaven Center for the Arts along with the RLA Trio (Tim Randles, Mike Labolle and Bobby Amirkhan) at 7 p.m. Sliding scale donation of $5 to $10, all ages.
The aforementioned free folk fest
Humboldt Folklife Society wraps up the week with the annual free fest from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The party includes two stages of music, several hours of workshops, a jam area in the Carlo Theater and more — see www.humboldtfolklife.org or elsewhere in the Journal for the full line up.
So many RPMs
Once again, DJs Red, and Matt'n'Adam bring you Soul Night — No. 45 — at Humboldt Brews. The beats begin at 9 p.m., cover is $5, 21-and-over.
Elsewhere on the spectrum
If twang and swing aren't your thing, maybe some black metal from Flagstaff? Specifically, Swamp Wolf at the Alibi, along with flood plain dirge punk by Black Plate. Music at 11 p.m., cover is $5, 21-and-over.
Worth noting: Built to Spill at Humboldt Brews, 8 p.m., $25, 21-and-over. This show will likely sell out. People love this band. ("Two Truths and a Lie" time: When I saw Silversun Pickups at Outside Lands in 2009, they followed Built to Spill and spent the first several minutes in awe of playing the same stage as their heroes; A former Built to Spill bandmember used to rent a room in the same Mission District Victorian as my brother, and when we were visiting and the bandmember was out of town, I slept in his bed; One time I had lunch with Built to Spill and Kirsten Dunst.) The Genders — whose track "Suffering Jukebox" is a wistful, delicate listen — open.
Here's a big cool show at the Palm Lounge: road-weary bluegrass with Urban Pioneers and nomadic Americana with Billy Cook. Show starts at 10 p.m., cover is $5, 21-and over.
Full show listings in the Journal's Music and More grid, the Eight Days a Week calendar and online. Bands and promoters, send your gig info, preferably with a high-res photo or two, to firstname.lastname@example.org.